Doug Aitken is an artist known for stretching the terms "site-specific" and "land art" to their fullest. His new design in Palm Springs made many creators travel to the inaugural Desert X art biennial in California.
Doug Aitken made his name as one of the US's most prolific artists by submerging sculptures into the Pacific Ocean, sending a train across the country to display original art by several interdisciplinary artists, and drilling a hole 700-feet into the ground in Inhotim, Brazil, to magnify the sound of the Earth's core.
The Desert X event, co-directed by Ed Ruscha, housed large-scale installations by 16 different artists, including Aitken.
Aitken's career has been so largely based on the experiential ways he can manipulate nature. Part of Desert X's mission statement includes French playwright Honoré de Balzac's quote, "The desert is god without men." Aitken wants viewers of his most recent work, Mirage, to be reminded of this isolating vastness. The installation forces viewers to see the intense splendor of their surroundings by enclosing them in the landscape, while also trapping them in a caricature of suburbia. Through this duality, Aitken pokes a hole in the overly-romanticized vision of the West, while still allowing the viewer to marvel at California's beauty.